College Hosts International Women Again for State Department Institute

Study of the U.S. Institutes


Gwen O’Brien 
Director of Media Relations
Saint Mary's College
Notre Dame, IN 46556
(574) 284-4579

ECA Press

June 24, 2014 (Notre Dame, Ind.)—Saint Mary’s College is proud to announce that it will hold its third Global Women Leaders Institute, a U.S. Department of State “Study of the U.S. Institute (SUSI).”  This summer’s SUSI welcomes 20 undergraduate women from Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Iraq, and Jordan, plus four Saint Mary’s students. The Study of the U.S. Institute is part of a broader State Department initiative to promote a better understanding of the U.S. abroad and help develop future world leaders.  The program allows undergraduate students from around the world to improve their leadership skills while learning about the United States.

The SUSI will begin on June 28th in Washington, D.C. with a State Department conference, titled: Women Embracing Leadership and Service. At the conference,
Saint Mary’s SUSI participants, along with three SUSI participants from other institutions, will meet with women leaders in the fields of education, business, healthcare, media, and public policy. The Saint Mary’s SUSI participants will then spend one week visiting local NGOs, the U.S. Institute of Peace, and hearing from a panel of Saint Mary’s women alumnae who work in D.C. and will discuss their leadership journeys. The SUSI participants will arrive on campus on Saturday, July 5, with an opening ceremony on Sunday, July 6, at 8:30 a.m. in Stapleton Lounge, Le Mans Hall. They will be on campus through Friday, August 1.

The Saint Mary’s institute, organized by the Center for Women’s Intercultural Leadership (CWIL), includes intensive academic study of U.S. women’s history, global women’s movements, leadership, and intercultural skills. There will also be service opportunities for the participants at one of seven local agencies partnering with Saint Mary’s (St. Margaret’s House, the YWCA, Center for the Homeless, El Campito, Sister Maura Brannick Health Center, Hannah’s House, and Chiara House).

Further, participants will visit major cities in the Midwest, including: Chicago, where they will attend a seminar at the University of Chicago Law School; Detroit, where they will attend a seminar on Arab-American women's leadership; and Indianapolis, where they will meet with the Secretary of State. Participants will enjoy hospitality in homes of local Michiana families where they will experience a typical American family weekend. CWIL staff, four student program coordinators, and Saint Mary’s faculty and guest lecturers will facilitate the SUSI.

The SUSI program is made possible through a grant from the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs under the Fulbright-Hays Act with the purpose of fostering “mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries.”

Media interested in covering SUSI events or seeking interviews for a story should contact Gwen O’Brien, director of media relations at or (574) 284-4579 or Adrienne Latson, staff writer, at or (574) 284-4847.

For further information about the SUSI Program or the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, please contact ECA Press, telephone 202-632-6552 or e-mail

About Saint Mary’s College: Saint Mary’s College, Notre Dame, Ind., is a four-year, Catholic, residential, women’s liberal arts college offering five bachelor’s degrees and more than 30 major areas of study, such as business, nursing, art, chemistry, and social work. The College’s single-gender environment has been proven, in study after study, to foster confidence, ethical leadership, and strong academic success. Saint Mary's College ranks 76 among the “Best National Liberal Arts Colleges” for 2014 published by U.S. News. Founded in 1844 by the Sisters of the Holy Cross, Saint Mary’s College’s mission is to educate women and prepare them for postgraduate success whether it’s a first job, graduate school, or postgraduate service.

About the Study of the U.S. Institutes: The Study of the U.S. Institutes are sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA).  Study of the U.S. Institute participants are among over 40,000 individuals participating in U.S. Department of State exchange programs each year.  For more than 60 years, ECA has funded and supported programs that seek to promote mutual understanding and respect between the people of the United States and the people of other countries.   For more information about ECA programs, visit